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Childminding - is it for you?

Any person rewarded for looking after children under eight for more than two hours a day must register with Ofsted. Those working in their own homes caring for children under eight must register as childminders, those caring for children aged eight or over may join the voluntary register to enable parents and carers to access the childcare element of working tax credit.

Rewards can include gifts, reciprocal arrangements, food or shopping bought for you, as well as money. Anything that may benefit you for providing care is a reward.

If you are not sure whether you need to register, you can ring Ofsted's helpline on 0300 123 1231 for more information.

Does everyone who looks after children need to be on the register?

No. You do not need to register as a childminder if you:

  • are the parent or relative of the child you are looking after; or you

  • have parental responsibility for the child

  • are a local authority foster parent in relation to the child

  • are a foster parent with whom a child has been placed by a voluntary organisation

  • foster a child privately

  • only look after the child between the hours of 6pm and 2am

The Childcare Act 2006 introduced a childcare register with two parts; a compulsory and a voluntary part. People may choose to join the voluntary part of the register if they are caring for children:

  • in the home of one of the children, for children aged from birth to 17 years
  • aged eight to 17 years
  • aged from birth to under eight in provision that is exempt from compulsory registration, such as sports coaching


You may wish to consider the following points before committing to a career in childminding:

  • do I enjoy looking after children?

  • can I offer children a happy and stimulating environment, with sufficient toys and equipment to meet their needs?

  • what hours am I prepared to work? What effect will this have on my own family?

  • how do my spouse/partner and my own children feel about me looking after other children?

  • do I feel capable of respecting the individual needs of children who have different family, ethnic and cultural backgrounds to my own?

  • will I be able to get on with parents and share information about their children?

  • am I prepared to commit towards my professional development as a childminder?

  • will I be able to talk to them about any problems or concerns in our agreements or about their children?

  • am I clear on respecting families confidentiality?

  • do all family members aged 16 or over understand they must complete an Enhanced DBS disclosure?

  • am I competent in English and Maths? (if you require additional support with this then contact the Adult and Community Learning Team)

What must I do to become a childminder?

Everyone in your household aged 16 and over will need to complete a DBS check prior to you applying to Ofsted. Please be aware that this will cost approximately £60 per person; including subscription to the DBS Update Service (this is an Ofsted requirement).

Disclosure and Barring Service Checks

Anyone in your household aged 16 or over; or who will be involved with your childminding business will need to complete a DBS check prior to applying to Ofsted. You MUST apply for your DBS through the Ofsted website to ensure they will accept it.

Please be aware that if any member of your household has a previous conviction and may appear on the ‘barred’ list; will mean you may be unable to register as a childminder. Please check the link below for further information.


You will also need to complete a health check for registration purposes.

You need to apply to Ofsted to be registered.

It is an Ofsted requirement that childminders complete pre registration training. In Dudley, we offer a comprehensive training package which will support you in meeting the requirements of the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) Statutory Guidance. The training will prepare you for your initial Ofsted registration visit, and your career as a childminder.

If you act as a childminder without being registered, it could lead to prosecution and an unlimited fine.

Although you do not need any specific childcare qualifications to be a childminder, you will need to complete the following short training courses (charges will apply for most courses) :

  • Pre-registration Childminding: Is it for me? Workshop (2 ½ hours)

  • Next Steps (2 ½ hours)

  • Paediatric First Aid (12 hours)

  • Child Protection Foundation (2 ½ hours)

  • Workshop to Raise Awareness of the Prevent Duty (WRAP) (2 hours)

  • Level 2 Full Food Safety (6 hours)

  • Inland Revenue Webinar

  • Introduction to the Early Years Foundation Stage Learning and Development (2 ½ hours)Preparing for your Ofsted Registration (2 ½ hours)

  • Preparing for your Ofsted Registration (2 ½ hours)